Forty-five dollars. That was the average price per square foot in the 1970s for real estate in Manhattan. Just fast forward a few decades later, and in 2018, Manhattan real estate commanded $1,773 per square foot. In just a few decades, the average price per square foot increased over 35 times in value.
Now it’s 2020. And there is a new “Manhattan real estate:” social media.
Facebook has been around for 16 years and has been the first true social media platform to command the attention of about 25% of the world’s population with 2.5 billion monthly users. Instagram has only been around for 10 years and has put its flag in the ground with 1 billion users.
Yes, these numbers are large, and it sounds like many are already utilizing the platforms, so where is the opportunity? Those numbers reflect how many accounts have been created on the social media platforms, not how many are actively leveraging it to grow their business and brand — just as there were a lot of people in Manhattan in the 1970s but not all of them owned property.
Many people are using social media for leisure, to stay up to date with their friends and families, to get educated or entertained, and to show their lives to others. A small percentage of the majority is actively investing time, money and strategy consistently into these massive social platforms to grow their businesses and brands, but the ones who do are gaining massive rewards and market share in their industries.
Social media has given the average person the ability to express themselves and showcase talents that others didn’t know they had for the world to see — for free! Social media is the reason for the likes of Justin Bieber, who was discovered right on YouTube, which some may not see as a social media platform, but you’d better believe it is.
In today’s world, building a brand and presence, showcasing your talent and staying consistent can completely change the trajectory of your life. From one moment, you could be thinking you’re going to just live a “society normal” life of working a 9-to-5, having a family and retiring at 65, and the next moment you could be traveling the world, all because of the time and money you invested into social media.
I believe that social media is at its start, just as Manhattan real estate was in the 1970s. Similarly, as real estate is a long-term investment, so is investing in building your brand on social media. Social media has proven itself to not be going anywhere; it is only going to adapt and develop over time for the masses to continue to use and enjoy.
Just as with Manhattan’s real estate, building a brand on social media can create the opportunities, leverage, attention, longevity and income that we crave and aspire to have.
An investment of your time, money and focus into social media today can change your entire life years down the line, where you can live a life doing what you are so passionate about. It’s an open market right now, giving many the opportunity to get in before its cost to entry rises.
Some may think it’s too late to jump into Facebook and Instagram, but I would argue against that. It takes thought to create a strategy unique to each platform, which you can then leverage to build a brand. However, if you’re going to stick with that excuse, look at the other social media platforms taking the field — you have YouTube, LinkedIn and TikTok. Each poses unique opportunities for different industries and talents. Get on the platforms, and learn them. Study others doing what you want to do, and put your unique spin on it. Be active, and engage — and, most importantly, stay consistent.
Social media has come quickly into the world, but it will not be leaving as quickly as it has arrived. It is time to embrace it, get in on the ground level and leverage it to grow your business and brand while the cost to entry is reasonable. Do not wait to take hold of the opportunity as so many did with Manhattan real estate who missed out on making 35 times their money if they had seen the opportunity and thought long-term.